Amber Heard has lost her Johnny Depp defamation case, regarding her article in The Washington Post, in which she discusses abuse allegations against her ex-husband. Although she doesn’t name him in the article, Johnny Depp maintains that the article damaged his career, suing her for defamation.
Upon her guilty verdict in the trial, Heard released a statement on Twitter, which reads, “The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband.”
She says, “I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”
She continues in her post, “I believe Johnny’s attorneys succeeded in getting the jury to overlook the key issue of Freedom of Speech and ignore evidence that was so conclusive that we won in the UK. I’m sad I lost this case. But I am sadder still that I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American – to speak freely and openly.”
Regardless of the events of the trial and their relationship, this does beg the question—what is in store for the future of public speech and writing in media, especially when it comes to survivors of abuse coming forward with their stories?
Although it may be too early to tell, Heard’s statement is enough to make one think on a deeper level about the societal impact of the trial.